Google has brought out a tool for creating 3D designs. Free for personal use, Google SketchUp is really easy to use and it is possible to create really sophisticated designs with it. Although I can’t see it replacing ProDesktop for quality work in Design and Technology anytime soon, it allows users to get the basics of 3D modelling really quickly. What’s more, in true Google mashup fashion, it allows you to place your finished design into Google Earth when you’ve finished it.
True attention to detail allows full dimensioning, and faces are draggable so that sections can be inspected on-the-fly. The “Shadow” feature will even show how shadows look at different times of the day and year!
There’s a library of pre-drawn items and the rendering can be changed to look as “sketchy” as you like. A great tool that will allow learners to become familiar with the principles of 3D design and modelling, this free-for-personal-use application will help to bridge the gap between simple 2D design programs and the more sophisticated tools like ProDesktop.